Wednesday 3 March 2021 1:52 pm

Budget 2021: Beer duty increase scrapped

The chancellor this afternoon announced that the planned rise in beer duty will be scrapped in recognition of the challenges facing the hospitality sector.

Rishi Sunak said planned tax increases on beer, wine and spirits will be cancelled for the second year in a row, following a tough period for pubs and restaurants.

Read more: Budget 2021: Keir Starmer accuses Sunak of ‘papering over the cracks’

“This applies to Scotch whisky, wine, cider and beer,” Sunak said in a statement.

“The on-trade has had a particularly difficult year, and a freeze to alcohol duties will help businesses recover from the pandemic”.

Sunak said the freeze will save drinkers 2p on a pint of beer, 1p on a pint of cider, 8p on a standard bottle of wine and 30p on a bottle of Scotch.

Diageo, the owner of Guinness and one of the world’s biggest brewery firms, said the decision provided “much-needed stability”.

“The last year has been incredibly tough and today’s decision, along with other measures to help the trade, gives the industry confidence to meet the ongoing challenges in these critical last months before reopening,” a spokesperson for Diageo said.

Read more: Budget 2021: Live news, updates and reactions

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